Adachi Museum of Art
The Adachi Museum of Art is located in Furukawa Town in Yasugi City, Shimane Prefecture. It was built under the concept of bringing together the art of Japanese painting with the art of the Japanese garden. The museum is famous for its beautiful Japanese gardens, which received three stars in the Michelin Green Guide Japan. Visitors can delight in the cleverly contrived “living Japanese paintings” and “living hanging scrolls,” and enjoy the expansive Japanese gardens that incorporate the surrounding landscape into their design.
The museum boasts large collections and displays of Japanese paintings, pottery, and Doga (Pictures for Children) gathered by a local entrepreneur, Zenko Adachi. It is particularly famous for the vast collection of 120 works created by the master of modern Japanese painting, Yokoyama Taikan. Mr. Adachi was also extremely passionate with gardening, and brought to life an extraordinary concept that fuses his two passions.
The total area of the premises is roughly 165,000m2, with 6 gardens surrounding the museum building. The main garden is the “Karesansui Garden”, The Dry Landscape Garden, which is a type of Japanese garden that expresses the natural movement of water without actually using water. This garden at the Adachi Museum of Art features a rock at the center representing an austere mountain and portrays a waterfall flowing from the mountain into a sea of white sand. The Japanese gardens at Adachi Museum use natural elements such as rocks, water, and plants, and also integrate the existing natural landscapes, to create settings that are in harmony with nature.
The “Hakusha Seisho Garden”, or The White Gravel and Pine Garden, can also be found in addition to the Dry Landscape Garden. It is a unique garden that can only be seen here, and was created based on the famous “Beautiful Pine Beach”(1937) painting by Yokoyama Taikan. The garden is a brilliant portrayal of Taikan's painting, with pine trees of various sizes, both large and small, placed on the gentle white sand slopes.
The “Living Framed Paintings” are not actual paintings, but frames placed around the edge of windows, so that the views of the Japanese garden seen from these windows look like Japanese paintings. Meanwhile, the “Living Hanging Scrolls” are scroll-shaped openings in the walls of the alcove, which also show the garden landscape as if it were an artwork created on a hanging scroll. Both the “Living Framed Paintings” and “Living Hanging Scrolls” are clever ways to invite visitors to enjoy the garden views in the same way as they view art. These views are truly live, Japanese paintings that allow visitors to admire the different beauties of the gardens each time they visit. This is a popular spot where it is possible to understand the ideas of Adachi who believed that “gardens itself are also pieces of paintings”.
One of the greatest features of the Adachi Museum of Art is being able to find a deeper understanding of modern Japanese paintings including those of Yokoyama Taikan through viewing seasonal Japanese splendors in the gardens.